The Biology and Paleo Environment Division (B&PE) is a diverse group of oceanographers, geologists, geochemists, biologists and environmental scientists who pursue research in two connected efforts. First, we use biology (usually looking at fossils) to uncover clues about Earth’s past environment. We also strive to understand how the modern environment— through its oceans, atmosphere and land—affects present-day biology.  >more...

Tree Ring Research Laboratory


Tree-Ring Lab (TRL) scientists are dedicated to expanding the use and application of tree-ring research around the world to improve our understanding of past climate and environmental history.  Current research concentrates on the use of tree-ring data networks to study regional climate, global climate teleconnections and anthropogenic impacts on forest growth.

Exploring new species in new regions, building collaborations around the world, and developing new quantitative techniques, TRL researchers are committed to advancing dendrochronology and paleoclimatology, as well as the ethic of good science

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Anthropogenic Impacts on Terrestrial Ecosystems


view from Atigun PassHuman activities are significantly and rapidly altering the form and function of terrestrial ecosystems. For example, we are changing the chemical composition of the atmosphere, converting natural landscapes to urban areas, and transporting floral and faunal species far beyond their natural boundaries. Through both field and lab based experiments, we strive to gain a better understanding of how such anthropogenic changes impact ecosystems. Using a wide range of measurement techniques, our study foci vary in scale from individual leaves to entire ecosystems, Recently, we have included the response of resident fauna who depend upon vegetation for both food and habitat.

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Microbial Ecology of the Hudson River Estuary


The Hudson River Estuary (HRE) is home to nation’s largest metropolitean area and supports industry of crucial economic importance. The area is a complex mixture of commercial, industrial, agricultural, and residential development. The watershed provides important services for drinking water, wildlife habitat, recreation (swimming, fishing, boating) and transportation

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